After a solid start to his rookie campaign, the former Indiana Hoosier was tasked with one of the toughest challenges in the association — defending two-time Most Valuable Player Nikola Jokic.
In 18 minutes off the bench, Jackson-Davis recorded eight points on 2-of-3 shooting from the field to go along with two rebounds and an assist. Jackson Davis finished with +4 against the Nuggets on Wednesday.
Guarding Jokic, Jackson-Davis was active, showing off good hands, athleticism and a fresh motor. Following the rookie’s impressive effort against one of the league’s best players, Steph Curry praised his young teammate.
He did great. Jokic is a beast. He averages whatever he averages across the whole league. It’s tough to stop him. You just try to make him work. I think after the first possession where he spun baseline and they called a foul. I think he kind of understood angles and just being ready to play — and then making him guard him on the other end too.
That’s what Trayce can bring to us on both ends of the floor. Lob and-one, got to free throw line a couple times in the second half, made a transition layup where he’s putting pressure on their entire team at the rim. He plays with confidence and he’ll understand the nuances of arguably the best center in the league right now, arguably him and Joel. Its a tall task and I think he did a great job.
Via @NBCSWarriors on Twitter:
Steph praises TJD's play on both ends of the floor 🤝 pic.twitter.com/cWTWUwLoRM
— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) November 9, 2023
In the Warriors one-point loss, Jokic did what he does, scoring 35 points on 14-of-25 shooting with 13 rebounds, five assists, three steals and a block in 37 minutes.
With another solid performance under his belt against one of the best overall players in the league, Jackson-Davis is clearly earning more playing time in Steve Kerr’s rotation, regardless of injuries to players higher on the depth chart. Jackson-Davis will have the chance to keep his fast start going against Evan Mobley, Jarret Allen and the Cleveland Cavaliers on Saturday.